Tag Archives: refugees

Integration Of Immigrants Issue In Hungary

The arrival of immigrants from all parts of the world is an ongoig issue in most nations in the European Union and Hungary increasingly has found itself still learning how best to integrate the new arrivals within society. The UNHCR recently investigated how Hungary is dealng with immigrants and warned about insufficient effort to get the new arrivals out of detention centers and out into the real world where they had to work, learn the language and establish a new life. As Mchael Lindenbauer of UNHCR told Hungarian officials “in the long run there is no such thing as integration within a center….In general, the refugees should be helped to start their own independent lives.” He emphasized that learning a new language is best done while at work or living among Hungarians rather than taking classes in a detention center.

A major concern of UN refugee experts is that Hungary does not provide enough interaction between refugees and local Hungarians. There is also a lack of job training to get people quickly into productive work with Hungarians. As always, any effective program for refugees makes them quickly cease being a foreigner who is outside society whlle making certain they are working, learning and focusing on the future.

Another MP Killed In Kenya- Chaos Continues

Another member of the Kenya parliament was killed when a policeman shot David Kimtai of the Orange Democratic Movement. Kofi Annan, former head of the United Nations is trying to get all parties to sit, discuss, and come up with a compromise solution that will end violence which has engulfed a nation that up to this point had escaped such tribal conflicts. Military helicopters have been ordered to shoot and kill any gangs that are engaged in violence or setting up road blocks. They have identified four categories of people who will be shot on sight if they engage in criminal actions–those looting property, those burning houses, or those carrying weapons or trying to barricade roads to prevent free movement of people and goods.

President Kibaki continues insisting he won the election that most observers believe was a fraudulent process in which Kibaki doctored vote totals. More than 800 people are dead and thousands forced into temporary refugee camps. For example, at the Naivasha GK Prison, moe than 5,000 people are seeking safety and although there are no avaialbe restrooms or clean water more people arrive by the hour. History will note this was not the finest hour of President Kibaki on whose head lies the death of hundreds of people.

Chaos Accelerates In Somalia

The situation in Somalia continues its rapid decline into even more chaos than previously has been characteristic of this nation. The United Nations estimates about 1,000,000 people are now refugees in their own land and at least 200,000 have fled the capital of Mogadishu in the past two weeks. Several months ago, an Ethiopian invasion urged on by President Bush led to the overthrow of an Islamic fundamentalist government and the creation of an interim Muslim government lacking power or authority. The UN Commissioner For Refugees(UNHCR) describes “Families continue to lack proper shelter and consistently resort to using any material– including plastic bags– to patch up their tukuls–flimsy dome-shaped shelters.” The UN authorized a force of 8,000 soldiers to assist in the area but only 1,600 Ugandans are in Somalia.

George Bush is convinced that any type of Muslim government ruled by Islamic fundamentalist must, by definition, be a terrorist organization. He encouraged Ethiopia, a basically Christian nation, to overthrow a Muslim government and the result is even more chaos. Unfortunately, President Bush can not impose his will on people who detest his world perspective. Perhaps, America must, at times, accept the presence of a Muslim government that does not meet its standards because the alternative is chaos in the lives of millions of innocent people.

Violence Continues In The Congo

Thousands of refugees poured out of camps in the eastern area of the Democratic Republic of Congo after Tutsi dominated insurgents attacked the army. Aya Shneerson of the UN said “There’s a massive movement of displaced toward Goma. It’s thousands of people. They’re packed onto the road carrying whatever they can carry.” The UN believes in the past few months an estimated 370,000 people have been displaced by the violence raging in the Congo. It is apparent Congo’s armed forces are not capable of defending the country against the various groups which have taken over large areas of the country. Hutus from Rwanda, who killed an estimated 800,000 Tutsis fled that nation and moved into the Congo after the Tutsi government overthrew the Hutu government.

It is estimated that about 3,000,000 people have died in the Congo since the new century began, but the world remains indifferent to this tragedy. Somehow, the death of these millions does not register on the minds of the western world. They ignore the tragedy of the Congo and people die.

Jerusalem Post Cynical About Arab Intentions

The editors of the Jerusalem Post expressed concerns felt by many Israelis about the upcoming George Bush sponsored peace conference dealing with Middle Eastern issues. The editorial noted that Arafat in 1987 rejected terrorism and expressed similar views in signing the 1993 Oslo accords. However, after these statements, “years of vicious suicide bombings ensued as did the rise of Hamas, which openly embraces terror and rejects Israel’s right to exist within its borders.” A Jerusalem Post correspondent obtained a copy of a letter from Abu Sitta, spokesperson for Palestinian refugees, in which he called for rejecting Israel’s claims to inhabit Palestinian land based on historical and biblical rights. He also warned against abandoning “the right of return after decades of fighting.”

Two issues emerge from the editorial — trust and refugees. Israel has ever right not to be completely trustful, but Palestinian leaders also have a right to be distrustful. One can not undo the past or the immediate present, but must focus on negotiation and compromise which point to the future. Each side has a long list of how the other side has betrayed past agreements. All successful compromise agreements require both parties to tear up such lists and deal with solving problems. The issue of refugee return is complex, but Arabs sometimes forget there are two sets of refugees — Palestinians who fled their land in 1948 and Jews who fled Arab nations in the forties and early fifties because they feared for their lives. The 600,000 Palestinians who left now number in the millions. Israel can not accept such numbers and still remain a majority Jewish nation. Palestinian refugees have not only grievances against Israel, but also toward fellow Arabs who have done nothing to provide jobs and full citizenship rights. Perhaps, a compromise might entail having Israel settlers leave the West Bank and turn over to Palestinian refugees their houses. This would not completely resolve the Palestinian refugee question, but, then again, no Arab nation has offered any financial compensation to Jews who left Arab nations.